Latency of copper vs latency of fibre?

Discussion in 'Cisco' started by anon6111, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. anon6111

    anon6111 Guest

    Hi all,

    I recently had one of my non-technical colleagues ask me an interesting
    questing - how fast is ethernet data transmitted over a UTP cable? So
    what he was really asking is "what is the average latency of an
    electrical signal over copper cabling?". I've done some googling but
    can't find a definitive answer to this. I know that as a rule of thumb
    the speed of light is reduced to around 0.66c in a fibre, so you could
    say that the signal travels through the fibre at 2/3 the speed of
    light. What is the equivalent for an electrical signal in copper?



    ....note that I'm only asking about the signal propagation time in the
    cable. The processing delay of the equipment at each end of the cable
    is a seperate issue.
    anon6111, Jun 19, 2006
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  2. anon6111

    J Guest

    I highly recommend getting a copy of "Ethernet: The Definitive Guide"
    by O'Reilly.

    The discussion about Ethernet specifications, specifically minimum and
    maximum cable lengths explains the round-trip propogation delay in
    detail. If memory serves me correctly I want to say that the maximum
    time between any two devices in a broadcast domain is something like
    26.5 micro-seconds for a maximum round-trip time of 53 micro-seconds.
    I think it's something like that but frankly I can't recall with any
    degree of certainty. I recommend the book to everyone in networking.
    I've found that the concepts it outlines are applicable in everything I
    do in networking every day.

    J, Jun 19, 2006
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  3. About 75%, for UTP. The difference usually only becomes significant for
    long distances (km) at which point moving significant bandwidth over UTP
    becomes challenging.
    Michael Newbery, Jun 19, 2006
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